Almost two weeks ago as per my routine I was crossing the road to get my rickshaw for university. While I was waiting, I saw a woman sleeping on the footpath. It was odd as I had never seen anyone in this area sleeping on the footpath since we have shifted here.
The woman was average looking with long hair and fair complexion. She was sleeping with her pillow. I assumed her as an ordinary beggar lying for the sake of sympathy and money. I took my rickshaw and got busy with my daily life.
Next day, I saw her again at same place but with additional CHADDAR with her. I was still waiting for rickshaw when she got up and saw me standing nearly ten feet away from her. She watched me waiting and flagging down the rickshaw for around five minutes but didn’t say anything. I expected her to ask for money but she kept watching me till I got my transport.
The next day, she was lying but was looking bit low. She was looking at me and the road for the rickshaw and smiled when I stepped in. It was strange that three days had gone and she didn’t even beg for a penny.
Same thing happened the next day but I neglected because many people stare when you are out and smile for no reason. I had three days off after it, so I totally forgot her. After all there are many people who give fake smiles every day.
After three days, when I saw her, I got a shock; her long hairs were now all trimmed to her shoulder level. Her fair complexion was dark and her face was full of dark spots. She looked conscious and disturbed! She was looking here and there as if she was afraid. I noticed there was an empty bottle and a shopper with few rice and many ants in it! It was quite obvious someone else is interested in her life too!
I was so indulged looking and observing her that I missed my rickshaw. The woman saw me, smiled and pointed towards it as if she wanted to tell that you missed it. I was embarrassed to be so indulged observing her and astonished on her reaction. I stopped another rickshaw and went. She kept smiling and looking till I got out of her sight. Without saying a word; her smile proved me wrong! She wasn’t a beggar.
Thousands of questions were running in my mind but I wasn’t in a state to ask. She didn’t allow me to concentrate and wandered in my mind whole day. A mere beggar who was nothing to me, no conversation, no relation yet so much attachment! Why? There was something I had to know. So I decided to talk to her and ask about her problem.
Three days went by, thinking about her and anxious to meet her. I didn’t want to be late. I wanted to ask many things. Where is her family and why is she here. I was impatient to see her. Next working day seemed so far away. I just didn’t want to be late!
Finally Monday came; did my breakfast, saw time and took some food in a shopper and left home. I was happy; finally I am going to answer all my questions. I had a narrow escape from accident as my eyes were looking for her instead of traffic. When I reached the other side of street my eyes roamed everywhere but I couldn’t see her. There was her CHADDAAR and pillow but she wasn’t there. I waited as I was sure I will get my answers. But after 15 minutes I lost hope and placed that shopper beside her pillow and left.
I don’t know why but I still had hope that maybe tomorrow I will see her. The statement “I DON’T WANT TO BE LATE” was screaming in my mind! So even when I got home on Monday, I checked the other side for any clue but everything was as it was, even the shopper I placed was on the same exact place.
I was sure next day I will see her in every case but….
Next day there wasn’t even a single thing!